It’s a rare treat for local jazz musicians to be able to present new, original work in a focused public listening environment, but change is in the works as the Greater Madison Jazz Consortium partners with Madison Music Collective and the Wisconsin Union Theater to present the second season of free InDIGenous concerts. Launched this past April with four free concerts at Madison Public Library’s central branch, the InDIGenous series showcases original music composed and performed by local jazz musicians.

“This series presents a range of musical styles and performing artists that reflects the diversity of our local jazz community,” said the Jazz Consortium’s Nick Moran. Set for four Friday evenings at the UW Memorial Union’s Frederic March Play Circle, one of our community’s top listening rooms for jazz, the Fall series will feature performances by the Latin Jazz group El Clan Destino, Fountain of Life Church’s Rivers of Madison band, and trumpeter Dave Cooper’s quartet. Said Moran, “We’ll also be presenting a unique “Piano Summit” featuring four of Madison’s top jazz pianists.”

InDIGenous Fall Series Schedule
UW Memorial Union’s Frederic March Play Circle

• October 23, 7:30 PM: El Clan Destino, with guest Cawi Buie
• November 6, 7:30 PM: Becca May Grant’s “The Light
• November 20, 7:30 PM: Piano Summit with Joan Wildman, Jane Reynolds, Dave Stoler and Jim Erickson

Becca Grant Group
Becca Grant Group

El Clan Destino’s concert on October 23rd will include several pieces inspired by Afro-Cuban religious music and traditional calls to deities like Obatalá and Elegua. Moran noted that for their InDIGenous concert, El Clan Destino will be joined by dancer Cawi Buie, a master of the Cuban street dances that heavily inspire the band’s music. “Cawi’s performance will show the traditional Afro-Cuban dances associated with these calls,” Moran said.

The November 6th concert features a collection of new works, “The Light Shines,” composed by Rivers of Madison group leader and Fountain of Life’s arts director, pianist Becca May Grant. “This body of work of Becca’s was ignited by the Justified Anger movement led by her church’s pastor, Rev. Alex Gee,” noted Madison Music Collective’s Laurie Lang.

“This is a thrilling and timely new work that draws on contemporary jazz and gospel music,” she said, adding that Becca’s ensemble includes jazz and gospel musicians and spoken word poets for this concert.

With continuing support from local audiences, the Jazz Consortium will work to make the InDIGenous series part of our community’s annual cultural calendar, and to have it be a place where musicians receiving funding from its soon-to-be-launched Artistic Development Grant Program can present their new work.

All concerts are free admission
More information at